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Thread: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

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    Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Hi
    I have ordered all of my components for building a PC (Asus P5Q pro, 6600 processor etc), but being a novice, I am a little apprehensive of tackling the task. Does anyone know of a good step by step (with pictures!), guide to assembling the components and installing Windows?
    Apologies if this has comes up a lot, but I just done a quick search and couldnt find what I wanted.

    Thanks in advance.

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Had a quick look around the internet and the below looked quite good with description and pictures:

    http://www.buildeasypc.com/hw/howto/assemblepc.htm

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    youtube can be useful "sometimes" and also badly misleading at others . . .

    Mainly it's not too hard.

    Putting the bits together is like playing with lego/meccano, really not the complex.
    Read the motherboard manual esp in relation to BIOS settings, look up what the settings mean (helpful to have a 2nd pc/laptop/someform of internet access)
    Installing a clean copy of windows is dead easy, boot off the CD and follow the on screen instructions.
    Once you're in windows you need to install all your drivers, always start with the motherboard (use the drivers off the cd) as it often contains bits that need to be installed before you can install other things.
    If you have a seprate graphics card, downloading the latest nvidia/ati drivers off there respective website and use thoes not the one the come on the cd.
    General rule of principle, if the windows hardware wizard pops up saying it's found something new which it will do, it will ether stright away say "your new device is installed", this is good, it'll probably ask you to restart, if it's a new motherboard then yes do so, if you've just pluged a us memory stick for teh first time you can tell it to go fish.
    If the hardware wizard comes up and asks tells you it wants to access the internet to find drivers, do not go any thurver, tell the hard wizard to get stuffed, the little X button or Alt+f4, now install the drivers off the CD that came with the device you're trying to install.

    Always read the manuals, they are there for a reason.

    Oh yes start small, ie motherboard, cpu, memory, hard drives, dvd/cd, graphics card (or onboard graphics depending which you're using) keyboard, mouse.
    Nothing else, no other perfiferal bits eg webcam, scanner printer, usb memory stick (unless you're booting off it) or such.
    Get all that put together, windows installed and the drivers for thoes bits installed.
    Then start to install the extra bits.

    Don't forget to update windows, install anti-virus any other main software you want. Once you've done that it may be a good idea to defrag the hard drive to make sure it didn't get too messey with all the installing and rebooting (you'll probably reboot your pc a dozen or more times dureing the whole install and update process.)
    Only once it's all up and running should you consider looking at overclocking, if you're thinking about overclocking it.

    EDIT: Always read the manuals!

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Cheesy video.

    Ignore/ kill the muzak and maybe find a better way of grounding yourself than this guy. Gives you a quick overview.

    Also familiarise yourself with your mobo manual - don't rely too heavily on someone elses build pics.

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required


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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Quote Originally Posted by Time Bandit View Post
    Cheesy video.

    Ignore/ kill the muzak and maybe find a better way of grounding yourself than this guy. Gives you a quick overview.

    Also familiarise yourself with your mobo manual - don't rely too heavily on someone elses build pics.
    That's a fairly basic but good video.
    The methord for grounding himself he's useing is to touch the two exposed earth pins on a US (I think it's US) power socket, should be absolutely as there should be no live power on the earth of a power socket (if there is then you need to get an electriction to look at your wireing at once)
    However as UK power sockets don't have exposed earth, it's not that helpful and is dangerous if you stick your fingures in the wrong part of the socket.
    Best way I've found is touch a radiator as central heating systems are generally earthed.

    couple of other basic tips,
    -Give yourself room/space to work in.
    -The boxes thing come in are handy for keeping track of bits and peices
    -Wash your hands before you start building, but don't moisterise (that will actually cover your hands in grease, basic washing up liquid is a very good degreasent)
    -Try not to driectly touch any pins or connectors.
    -A large aftermarket cooler makes a good handle to lift a motherboard up by when lowering it into the case

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    The order is important for hassle free installation IMO. Almost always put the drives in first and then the PSU. Route the power cables and check they reach. One thing to think of is the length of your video card and case size. You generally don't want a drive opposite a long card if possible.

    Then, if your cooler has a backplate fit that in the motherboard before adding the CPU & RAM. Put the motherboard in the case unless you have a low HSF and a removable motherboard tray, in which case you can add the HSF outside. Attach all the cables you can and then add the GFX card and any other add-on cards and connect.

    The most fiddly bit is connecting the Power on & case LED lights - they're small and in a corner, and you can't connect until the mobo is in place. So connect those first before anything else in that area.

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Quote Originally Posted by Pob255 View Post
    That's a fairly basic but good video.
    The methord for grounding himself he's useing is to touch the two exposed earth pins on a US (I think it's US) power socket, should be absolutely as there should be no live power on the earth of a power socket (if there is then you need to get an electriction to look at your wireing at once)
    However as UK power sockets don't have exposed earth, it's not that helpful and is dangerous if you stick your fingures in the wrong part of the socket.
    Best way I've found is touch a radiator as central heating systems are generally earthed.

    couple of other basic tips,
    -Give yourself room/space to work in.
    -The boxes thing come in are handy for keeping track of bits and peices
    -Wash your hands before you start building, but don't moisterise (that will actually cover your hands in grease, basic washing up liquid is a very good degreasent)
    -Try not to driectly touch any pins or connectors.
    -A large aftermarket cooler makes a good handle to lift a motherboard up by when lowering it into the case
    Good advice; plenty of space to work is key... good ventilation to you don't want to be sweating all over your shiny new components.

    A good set of screwdrivers is a must, I have a magnetised one that I use to retreive screws from akward places as well... obviously you have to be careful not to touch certain components with that.
    ___________________________________________________________

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    System 2: Lenovo Ideapad S205: AMD E350 APU (1.6Ghz), 2Gb 1066Mhz DDR3, Radeon HD6310 (integrated), 250Gb HDD, Windows 7 64Bit Home Premium

    System 3:Asus Eee 901: 12Gb Ubuntu 10.10 Gnome Desktop edition


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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Thanks everyone.
    Just some silly questions.

    I have bought a wireless keyboard and mouse, along with all the other components, will they work when I first switch on the pc and start setting the bios etc or do I need old fashioned wired ones, until I can install the drivers for the wireless ones?

    Whats the best/simplest way to test everything is working as it should, ie pc performance?

    If I have bought/downloaded software and installed it on my old pc, how can I transfer it to my new pc. Mainly things like Tunebrite, I have disks for office etc?

    Any good practice/useful things to do with new build? eg installing Ashampoo, partitioning my 1TB disk, etc??

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Quote Originally Posted by rigsyb1208 View Post
    Any good practice/useful things to do with new build? eg installing Ashampoo, partitioning my 1TB disk, etc??
    I definitely recommend a decent partitioning strategy especially with a large HD - otherwise it will take forever to defragment your TB. Radified has a pretty comprehensive article on the benefits of partitioning (organise data, improve responsiveness, ease of maintennance, etc.) although ulimately you may not want as many partitions as he/she seems to prefer - at the very least have separate partitions for the OS and data.

    This general purpose /light gaming machine, for example, has 4 partitions on the main HD:

    OS (Windows XP) + MS office stuff + light applications
    Games + other progs that might require a cd/dvd to run
    User data (my docs etc)
    Media files (music and video)

    Your needs will be different depending on what you will use the machine for. The Elder Geek has a step by step guide on how to partition drives in XP. I imagine that the process is similar in Vista.

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Pretty much *the* best install guide for windows will be Eric / Tweakhound's one -

    http://www.tweakhound.com/xp/installxp/installXP1.htm
    http://www.tweakhound.com/vista/installguide.htm

    There's tweak guides there too once you're done


    I'll second the 2 partitions for windows/data. Never seen a need for more though unless I'm running multiple drives, then you can stick a page file one at the start of the 2nd, and other data partitions.

  12. #12
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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Quote Originally Posted by Pob255 View Post
    Once you're in windows you need to install all your drivers, always start with the motherboard (use the drivers off the cd) as it often contains bits that need to be installed before you can install other things.
    If you have a seprate graphics card, downloading the latest nvidia/ati drivers off there respective website and use thoes not the one the come on the cd.
    Why use the drivers on the cd for the mobo and not the ones you can download off the internet like you do with the gfx.

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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Quote Originally Posted by handscombmp View Post
    Why use the drivers on the cd for the mobo and not the ones you can download off the internet like you do with the gfx.
    becuase you cant get onto the interwebs without network drivers?

    but yeah all the rest
    nvidia/ati
    chipset driver
    sound driver

    can really be gotten online for the most up to date driver.

  14. #14
    handscombmp
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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Quote Originally Posted by jackvdbuk View Post
    becuase you cant get onto the interwebs without network drivers?

    but yeah all the rest
    nvidia/ati
    chipset driver
    sound driver

    can really be gotten online for the most up to date driver.
    A clever one heh?

    You can just download them onto a usb stick then.

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    Senior Member Pob255's Avatar
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    Re: Building a new PC - advice/guide required

    Quote Originally Posted by jackvdbuk View Post
    becuase you cant get onto the interwebs without network drivers?
    Yes but it's a little more than that.
    (Not sure what asus is like off hand for these points)
    Motherboard drivers tend to comprise not of a single driver but up to as many as 6 separate drivers, often when you download the files they have great names like sp2723584.exe (now was that the driver for the chipset? or the onboard network or sound or secondary pci bus controller or . . . )
    And these drivers can get shirty if you install them in the wrong order.

    However on the CD you'll have all the drivers and generally a nice menu system that will install them all in the right order.
    They also often come with good online updaters, which will sort out getting the up to date drivers, however these updaters require working drivers in the first place to detect what you have in the first place.

    The last is simple, motherboard drivers don't change much and generally don't need updating, it's motherboard BIOS's that tend to get updated not the drivers.

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